DARPA Puts Techies to the Test at Bay Area Hackfest

By Yolanda R. Arrington
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

Sabur Hassan Baidya sets communications with his team’s drone during the 2017 Defense Advance Research Project Agency Software Defined Radio Hackfest. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Darien G. Kenney

Hackathons provide opportunities for the public to engage and interact around upcoming forms of technology. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, held its own version of a hackathon Nov. 13 – 17 in California.

“Hackfest” allows DARPA to further its work in building common platforms and toolsets. Hackfest gives the free and open-source software community a chance to build engagement with DARPA in a mutually beneficial way. DARPA’s Software Defined Radio Hackfests were created to engage a broader audience, more than simply the core developers of a project.

Here’s why DARPA says Hackfest is so important:

The physical and cyber worlds are becoming inseparable. Computers, home appliances, vehicles, cameras, and the myriad handheld devices upon which we all now depend are wirelessly connected to each other and to ourselves, with each system striving to achieve its respective mission in an ever more congested electromagnetic (EM) space. The DARPA Bay Area SDR Hackfest is designed to explore and better understand the complex relationships we are creating within the EM spectrum, and examine in particular the cyber-physical intersection of software defined radio (SDR) and remotely piloted aircraft.

More than 130 people came together for the start of Hackfest. Many participated in brainstorming sessions which were promoted on Twitter. The sessions are a great way for attendees to talk about challenges, opportunities, and successes.

Hackfest attendees participated in white-boarding, vetting concepts and testing DARPA’s fleet of unmanned aerial vehicles.

Watch as the drones take flight.

Check out a few photos from Hackfest. (Click images to enlarge)

For more information about the DARPA Bay Area SDR Hackfast, click here.

DARPA Bay Area SDR Hackfest
Bay Area SDR Hackfest Kicks-Off

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